5 habits that are hindering your productivity

Whether you’re an employee in a huge firm that has so many staff members you don’t stand a chance of ever meeting them all, or you’re a solitary freelance professional working from the comfort of your own home, productivity is vital. However, productivity is also a very vulnerable entity and is constantly fighting a losing battle against bad habits that are out to destroy it, but we’re here to help you defend against the enemy.

Without impeccable productivity, you can’t possibly hope to deliver at your maximum potential, which can have a knock-on effect when it comes to keeping clients and impressing your senior. There are a number of bad habits that you will be indulging in every single day without even knowing it so grab yourself a cuppa and carry on reading to help identify and eliminate these unnecessary hurdles from your working day.

You have a messy working space

HLW International LLP ran a study of 400 managers and employees and found that the cleanliness of a working space has a dramatic impact on the productivity levels of staff. The research results revealed that there was a 5% productivity increase in those working in a clean staff, which was financially translated into a substantial £80,000 for the company in question.

This proves that a tidy, hygienic working area is absolutely conducive to great productivity, so set aside 10 minutes at the beginning of every day to get rid of any rubbish, give your desk a wipe down and ensure your space is clear of anything that your mum would deem unclean. Doing this will also reduce the spreading of germs and in turn, decrease illness and subsequent absence from work.

You’re giving in to social media

No matter what we’re doing or where we are or what time of day it is, social media has fast become a worldwide distraction and is a leading culprit in dipping productivity levels of staff. Routinely checking sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram has become a habit, no, an addiction for most of us but this serial scrolling can land you in some sticky situations when it comes to the workplace.

It’s one thing getting scalded by your grandma over Sunday lunch as you Instagram your #FoodPorn-worthy roast dinner but getting caught red-handed by your boss is another story. Not only could your wandering thumbs land you in some disciplinary trouble, it also eats into valuable time during your working day. We’ve all been there, you log in to Twitter to post one quick tweet and the next thing you know, the hours have flown by and we’re into the next millennium! Try switching your phone off and leaving it out of reach until lunch time or only allowing yourself a social splurge when you’ve completed a target number of tasks.

You’re guilty of serial procrastination

Procrastination is something we’re all guilty of and when you’ve got a particularly busy day full of things you’d really rather not be doing, it’s easy to be lead astray. You can become suddenly hyper-keen to organise your desktop, pour yet another cup of coffee or do literally anything to avoid your menacing to-do list for a little while longer. However, the avoidance tactic will seriously hinder your productivity so its best just get stuck in. Experts suggest that tackling the hardest or most unpleasant tasks on your list first can boost motivation and keep productivity levels afloat, so it’s time to get your priorities in order.

You aren’t looking after yourself properly

Now we’re sure you don’t need us to tell you that getting enough sleep, eating your greens and staying hydrated is vital for physical and mental wellbeing. Sleep deprivation and a bad diet hinders focus, reduces alertness and consequentially has a knock-on effect on professional productivity, so eating well and getting eight hours sleep each night is pretty crucial. Drinking a big glass of water each morning has been proven to wake the brain and body up more effectively than a cup of coffee so try reaching for some h2O instead of your daily caffeine fix.

You don’t know when to say no

Serial procrastination means you aren’t getting enough done but taking on too much work is equally as damaging to your flow of productivity. Not knowing when to say no often leads to you biting off more than you can chew, which means the quality of your work becomes compromised. It’s far better to concentrate on a more manageable workload and deliver to your full potential than produce work that is below par.

As much as you would like to believe otherwise, you (probably) aren’t a superhero and you can’t do absolutely everything so it’s important to establish and accept your personal limits. Clients, customers and colleagues are far more likely to respect someone who is honest about their capabilities than somebody who promises things they can’t deliver on. Discuss more lenient deadlines, delegate to staff members or consider outsourcing to make life a little easier on yourself.

Want to know more about the benefits of outsourcing? Click here.

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